Man shot, killed on 18th Place and M Street, NE

Update: According to the Washington Post police have identified the victim as 32-year-old Ervin Lamont Griffin, of the District. A press release from MPD follows the jump.

A man was shot and killed just before 11:30 p.m. on Friday at the 1200 block of 18th Place NE, ABC 7 reports.

A press release from ANC 5B10 said that a rowdy group assembled at the location, and multiple shots claimed the life of an African American male. ABC 7 said police are searching for a suspect.

The shooting shattered neighbors’ hopes that the area was getting safer, according to the ANC press release. “Many in the ANC 5B10 community believe the M Street homicide is a sign the city is headed for a bloody summer,” the release said.

Read the full press release after the jump.

May 14, 2011

Another Shooting Erodes Safety Gains in Northeast Community

( Washington DC ) –Declining police numbers has become a critical public safety issue. The police, already stretched thin are experiencing serious difficulty maintaining presence in volatile areas. Last night another homicide devastated neighbors in the ANC 5B10 community. The area surrounding18th and M Streets, NE has a long-standing reputation as a murder vortex. Officers patrolling on 18th and M Street, NE were also scrambling to maintain visibility in Trinidad . During the interim, a rowdy group assembled and shortly thereafter shots rang out, claiming the life of yet another African American male.

There has been a perverse level of violence in the ANC 5B10 community, which warrants having police presence in the 1800 block of M Street during the evening and midnight tours. Shootings here had subsided when police were able to maintain this level of police presence, giving neighbors hope the area was becoming safer. Now many residents are afraid criminals will claim the area again. “I knew something terrible would happen tonight when I didn’t see the police or the light tower” says, “Lisa.” “Lisa” lives in the 1800 block of M Street, NE and is too terrified to give her real name.

Police Chief Cathy Lanier has already issued a warning regarding the dire consequences of declining numbers of police officers. Chief Lanier believes MPD will have difficulty maintaining public safety if the number of sworn officers drops below 3800. The current number of officers is holding at 3878; however, this number is expected to decrease quickly at a rate of 15 per month due to attrition.  “I am calling on Mayor Gray and the DC Council to reprogram critical dollars to help MPD keep our streets safe; my constituents don’t want a bloodbath here,” says, Commissioner India Henderson, 5B10. “Where is Councilmember Harry Thomas and why isn’t he leading the call for increased police funding and presence in my community and Ward 5,” says Henderson ? Many in the ANC 5B10 community believe the M Street homicide is a sign the city is headed for a bloody summer. Declining police numbers is a serious issue that will only get worse if the Mayor and Council allow the attrition rate to run its course.

From MPD:

May 14, 2011

Homicide: Rear of the 1200 Block of 18th Pl., NE

(Washington, DC)-Detectives from the Metropolitan Police Department’s Homicide Branch are investigating a fatal shooting which occurred in the rear of the 1200 block of 18th Pl., NE.

On Friday, May 13, 2011 at approximately 11:25 pm units from the Fifth District responded to the rear of the 1200 block of 18th Pl., NE. Upon their arrival they found an adult male victim suffering from gunshot wounds. Personnel from DC Fire and Emergency Medical Services responded and the victim was pronounced dead on the scene by a member of the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner for the District of Columbia.

The decedent is identified as 32 year-old Ervin Lamont Griffin of SE, Washington, DC.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the police at (202) 727-9099 or 1-888-919-CRIME (1-888-919-2746).

The Metropolitan Police Department currently offers a reward of up to $25,000 to anyone that provides information which leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons wanted for any homicide committed in the District of Columbia.

Additionally, anonymous information may be submitted to DC CRIME SOLVERS at 1-866-411-TIPS and to the department’s TEXT TIP LINE by text messaging 50411. If the information provided by the caller to the Crime Solvers Unit leads to an arrest and indictment, that caller will be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

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